Tully Tigers prodigy Thomas Flegler makes his State of Origin debut

Tully Tigers prodigy and Brisbane Broncos prop, Thomas Flegler, made his State of Origin debut for Queensland in the final game of the series last Wednesday. Photo: Maria Girgenti

LAST Wednesday, former Tully Tigers, Northern Pride junior and Brisbane Broncos prop, Thomas Flegler, made his State of Origin debut for Queensland, who restored some pride with a gritty 20 – 18 win over New South Wales.

Flegler was one of five new faces named in the 20-man extended squad which faced New South Wales at Cbus Stadium.

The third game in the series was moved from Newcastle to the Gold Coast Titans’ home ground at Cbus Stadium in Robina, after the recent COVID-19 outbreak and lockdown in Greater Sydney.

Flegler has played 51 games for the Brisbane Broncos in 2021, after a shoulder injury kept him out of the game for the latter part of last year.

He was a joint winner of the Rookie of the Year Award in 2019, in his debut season with the Brisbane Broncos. 

His Queensland debut was probably a childhood dream for Flegler, who started his rugby league journey in the Tully Tigers’ junior ranks. 

After suffering a record-breaking 50 – 6 loss in the series opener, followed by a 26 – 0 defeat in Origin II, the Maroons were desperate to salvage some pride in the third game of the series.

Tully Tigers’ junior and senior players and staff even compiled a special video tribute conveying their congratulations and support to Flegler.

Despite Flegler only having limited time on field to prove himself, he made the most of it, and quickly racked up 45 metres in 18 minutes.

After the game, Flegler expressed how happy he was to make his debut for Queensland and be part of the winning team.

“It was pretty surreal pulling on the jersey, and when I ran out, I was so nervous, especially as the game was so tight.”

“After my first run, the nerves subsided, and I got into the rhythm of the game. The pace of the game was a lot faster than I expected but it was a great learning curve.”

“This is an unforgettable moment, and you couldn’t wipe the smile off my face. It is one of the happiest moments in my career so far and I will never take it for granted.”

“My highlight in the game was the offload which saw Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow score a try on debut.” 

“Even though we did not get the overall series win, it was great to achieve this win, especially as we celebrated the milestones of Fidow’s debut and Josh Papalii’s twentieth game.”

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